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Poster: Mr. Date: Jun 11, 2005 8:10am
Forum: movie_of_the_week Subject: Re: About Herk Harvey

At the Spencer Research Library at the Kansas University in Lawrence, Kansas, they have the Centron Collection, which includes all the films ever produced by Centron, plus about 30 or 40 boxes' worth of material including scripts, contracts, newspaper and magazine clippings, and newsletters. A lot of them mention Herk Harvey, including one newspaper article from the Lawrence paper about Herk of Centron being involved in a community theater production. Anyway, I picked out some of the films that Herk directed out of the archive, and my favorite is "Pork: The Meal with a Squeal," which is narrated by Herk Harvey. Also there is a promotional film made for Monsanto called "Operation Grass Killer" which stars Herk as a farmer raving on and on about the wonders of Monsanto. Another film I was able to see was one sponsored by Phillips 66 and starring the Rowan and Martin comedy team. Apparently it was directed by Herk, because there's a picture of him with Rowan and Martin in the boxes. It's a training film for Phillips 66 gas station men from the late '60s. Very cool.

Recently, I also got a chance to meet Norm Stuewe, who was one of Herk Harvey's regular cameramen at Centron. He told a funny story about him and Herk traveling to the Mexican border to shoot a film for Centron. The border patrol stopped them, and told them they couldn't go in with their equipment. So, Herk told Norm to just go into Mexico City and hang out, while Herk called Centron and had them mail camera equipment to them in Mexico City. And it worked! Also, he told me how he and Herk were in Haiti, and Herk sent Norm out to get a shot of a local monument while Herk took care of business in the hotel. Norm got arrested by the Haitian police and spent a few hours in jail, until he talked himself out of there. Then, he returned to the hotel and Herk asked, "Did you get the shot I wanted you to get?" And Norm said, "No." And then Herk exploded in anger and said he'd do it himself. Then Herk got arrested, and Norm had to get him out of jail. Then they returned to the U.S. and heard on the plane that JFK had just been shot. Apparently, that was the trip that Herk went on right after "Carnival of Souls" was released, and while Herk was in South America, the distributor went out of business and Herk couldn't do anything about it and save his film from going underground.

I also met Russell Mosser, the founder of Centron, one time and he was a very interesting person to talk to, although he didn't have much to say about Herk Harvey, but he did say that Centron believed in women's-lib before it even became standard practice, as he paid female scriptwriter Trudy Travis more than any of the men at Centron, except for directors like Herk.
When a cameraman complained about this, Mosser just said, "If you can write as good as her, I'll pay you her salary."

Anyway, I think that Herk did a lot of cool things in his many years of industrial filmmaking, and people don't always realize that there was a lot more to his career than "Carnival of Souls."

This post was modified by Mr. on 2005-06-10 08:38:05

This post was modified by Mr. on 2005-06-11 15:10:52

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Poster: Elijah McGinnis Date: Oct 14, 2005 5:02am
Forum: movie_of_the_week Subject: Re: About Herk Harvey

Did you happen to run into any movies called The Sound of a Stone, or What About Juvenile Delinquency? My grandfather was in Carnival of Souls as the Organ Factory Boss (Tom McGinnis) and he did a few other films with Herk Harvey. I'm trying to locate as many as I can. Thanks.


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Poster: Spuzz Date: Oct 14, 2005 7:18am
Forum: movie_of_the_week Subject: Re: About Herk Harvey

What about Juvenile Delinquency can be found here;

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